What is a breast lift (mastopexy)?
A breast lift in Pasadena, is designed to raise sagging breasts without shrinking their size. As women age, gravitational pull and a change in breast tissue will cause them to droop significantly. When skin loses its elasticity and fat from the chest migrates downward, it leads to an overall decrease in breast volume.
Through breast lift surgery, it’s possible to restore both the shape and perkiness of breasts that have changed due to pregnancy or significant weight loss. This is a great source of relief for many women who find these changes troubling.
Sometimes, an implant is also inserted to further increase the volume, size, and shape of the breast while maintaining the benefits of the lift. Dr. Panossian is happy to discuss this option with you as well during your consultation.
Ideal Candidates for Breast Lift Surgery
Breast lifts are typically recommended for women who have sagging or drooping breasts due to aging, pregnancy, breastfeeding, or significant weight loss. Also, ideal candidates for a breast lift procedure are those who want to restore a youthful appearance to their breasts, achieve their cosmetic goals, and improve the symmetry of their breasts.
This surgical procedure removes excess skin and repositions the remaining tissue in order to create a more lifted and youthful look. Patients should be in good health and have realistic expectations about the outcome of the surgery. To determine if you are an ideal candidate for this procedure is to schedule a consultation with Dr. Panossian.
During your consultation, he will assess your individual needs and help you decide if this procedure is right for you.
How is a mastopexy performed?
Once the surgeon has determined that you are a good candidate for breast lift surgery, the procedure is performed using one of three currently practiced methods. These are based mainly on the degree of breast sagging (or breast ptosis) and the style of the incision required. For breasts with mild sagging (Grade I), a circumareolar mastopexy may be sufficient to elevate the nipple-areola complex to a more aesthetically pleasing position. In this type of breast lift surgery, an asymmetric incision is placed around the existing nipple-areola complex. The nipple is then elevated to the new position, and the incisions are closed in a circular pattern around the new areola.
For breasts with moderate to severe sagging (Grade II or III ptosis), we use a lollipop-style incision to gain greater elevation of the nipple-areola complex. We call this a “vertical lift” or vertical mastopexy. The surgeon resizes the areola during this procedure and elevates the breast tissues that descend through the incisions. Lastly, Dr. Panossian removes excess skin in a precise manner without sacrificing breast tissue and fat to augment the volume.
For extremely severe sagging (Grade IV ptosis), we use an anchor-style incision to resuspend the breast tissues, elevate the nipple-areola complex, and eliminate redundant skin. This is the most extreme type of lift for the most extreme type of breast ptosis.
Most breasts are amenable to either the circumareolar or vertical mastopexy (lollipop–style) options. Frequently, surgeons can combine a breast lift with implants to help further enhance breast volume. Dr. Panossian will perform a thorough consultation before surgery to establish the optimal surgical plan that will match your expectations and desires.
What is the recovery from a breast lift?
A mastopexy can take two to four hours to perform in an out-of-hospital setting. We utilize long-lasting local anesthesia coupled with general anesthesia to largely control pain in the postoperative phase. You should have a companion or relative help you in the initial 24 hours after surgery. Your initial dressings will consist of gauze and either an elastic wrapping or a medical bra. We will remove any external sutures during the first post-operative appointment. These coverings will then be replaced within the opening week for a gentle, supportive bra. You will need to wear it continuously for the upcoming three to four weeks.
Your breasts will be bruised and swollen for the first week following surgery. However, pain is minimal. As with other breast procedures, you should plan on staying home for the first week, with very limited activities, including walking, reading, and light duty around the house. Avoid driving during this time and heavy lifting or reaching above your head.
In 2 weeks, you may begin to gently increase your activity, including more extensive walking but no aggressive exercise or weight lifting. Running and other high-impact activities should also be avoided for 4 to 6 weeks.
During your healing process, there may be a diminished sensation in the nipples or breast skin. Much of this effect will disappear as the swelling subsides over the next 6 weeks. Occasionally, the decreased sensation may be permanent.
Risks and Complications
Breast Lift: Risks and Complications
A breast lift (especially when performing breast implant augmentation as well) is not a simple surgery, but it is relatively safe in experienced hands. Nonetheless, every surgery carries an inherent set of risks and potential for complications. Sensitivity or reaction to anesthesia is a rare possibility with any procedure. Bleeding and infection can also rarely occur. Many times, these two complications are controlled with needle aspiration in the office and/or oral antibiotics. In more severe cases, it may be necessary to perform another brief surgery to drain the blood collection (or hematoma). Or clean out an infection, or administration of intravenous antibiotics. When combined with an implant augmentation, the risk of requiring additional surgery to address these problems may be slightly higher.
Scars are not unusual for any operative process. In a mastopexy operation, the marks can, at times, be fairly extensive. They may bulge or spread out or stretch over time. There exist varied breast lift techniques, but board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Panossian has shaped his own technique for improving the appearance of mammary scars through the amalgamation of goods and sequences that have provided consistently fabulous results (but individual outcomes can differ).
Slight breast asymmetry is always a risk in plastic surgery. After a breast lift, there may be subtle differences between the breasts in terms of shape, size, nipple position, or decreased sensation. Once again, these are relatively rare occurrences in experienced hands.
Dr. Panossian has vast experience in minimal-scar breast lift surgery and will be happy to review the various options during consultation. His staff is always available to answer your questions and address problems should they arise. Call today for a consultation.
Why choose Dr Panossian
- He received his medical education at Tufts University School of Medicine.
- Graduated at the top of his class at UCLA, receiving Phi Beta Kappa and Summa Cum Laude honors.
- Was accepted into an elite combined general surgery and plastic surgery residency at the Keck School of Medicine of USC.
- Completed subspecialty training in craniofacial surgery at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto and Harvard Medical School.
- Was mentored by Dr. Ron Zuker in the practice of facial paralysis reconstruction. This prestigious fellowship position was available to only one surgeon in the United States.
- Is affiliated with various charitable and educational organizations, including Operation Smile and Mending Kids.
- Is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and the highly selective American Association of Plastic Surgeons, reserved for only a select group of individuals nationally who have demonstrated excellence in academic plastic surgery.
- Holds memberships in several other professional societies including the American College of Surgeons and the American Society of Reconstructive Microsurgery.
- He serves on the Board of Directors for Mending Kids and the Gondobay Manga Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the improvement of lives in Sierra Leone.
- Has been nominated by his peers annually since 2012 as a “Super Doctor.”
- Served as an expert medical consultant and appeared on The Doctors, Grey’s Anatomy, and Nip/Tuck.
- Has been featured as “Top Doctor” in US News and World Report, Pasadena Magazine, and Los Angeles Magazine.
Frequently Asked Questions About Breast Lift
The cost of a breast lift varies depending on the complexity of the procedure and the individual patient. Also, factors such as anesthesia fees and surgical fees must be considered. Generally speaking, the cost can range from $3,000 to $7,000. It is important to discuss pricing with your surgeon prior to undergoing surgery.
During your consultation, your surgeon will discuss your goals and expectations for the procedure. They will also perform a physical examination of your breasts to determine the best course of treatment. Your surgeon may also take photographs of your breasts to use as a reference during surgery. Additionally, they will discuss any potential risks or complications associated with the procedure.
If you live near Pasadena, CA, Dr. Panossian offers breast lift among its services, and is conveniently located at 39 Congress St., Suite 402 Pasadena, CA 91105
Last modified by Dr. Andre Panossian